Automotive technology has come a long way since the 1950s (heck, it’s come a long way since the 1990s). Technology is what makes antique cars unique, since no automaker in their right mind would build vehicles like they did in the past (unless you’re Morgan). Car and Driver Tech Director Don Sherman and Corvette Chief Engineer Tadge Juechter have been taking six generations of Corvettes out for a drive (“Car Nerds In Corvettes”) to observe how technology has taken the Corvette to its current heights – now it’s the C1’s turn.
In the below video, the two Corvette enthusiasts discuss the evolution of the Corvette over time starting with this very model. Nineteen fifty-four was the second year of the Corvette but is practically identical to the first. While driving the C1, Juechter notes some common characteristics of cars produced in the 1950s: an enormous steering wheel, high idle speed, and unresponsive brakes. But this is a sports car, right? Well, Chevrolet saddled the Corvette with a straight-six and automatic transmission, so they eventually went back to the drawing board and, in 1956, the facelifted Corvette found its mojo thanks to engineer Zora Arkus-Duntov.